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Monday, 23 August 2010 09:49

Amazon to end XBLA game sales

Written by David Stellmack


Will continue to see the points, however
When Microsoft announced that it would be teaming up with Amazon to sell Xbox Live Arcade games directly though the Amazon site for delivery to your Xbox we didn’t really know how successful this plan would be. We now apparently have our answer, as Amazon has posted a notice that says that they are no longer selling Xbox Live Arcade games directly from the Amazon Web site; but instead they will continue to offer the sale of Microsoft Xbox Live Points.

While Amazon isn’t commenting on exactly why the sale of the Xbox Live Arcade games has ended, it has been assumed (according to whispers that we hear) that sales were not exactly setting Amazon on fire. The big draw, however, was the ability to purchase Xbox Live Arcade titles for their real world money price, rather than having to purchase points and then use the points to make a purchase. The advantage, of course, was no wasted points, as you only spent what you wanted to buy.

Recent changes by Microsoft in the way that points are sold combined with a number of efforts to re-price items to be sold has perhaps led buyers to be able to use their points in a more efficient manner; which perhaps might have contributed to the lack of appeal in purchases from sources such as Amazon.

We suspect, however, that this isn’t the last time that someone will try to sell gamers on the idea of purchasing titles via the Web using real money instead of points, and getting a code to redeem on Xbox Live to download their purchase. We continue to hear a number of rumors that several other parties might be interested in such an arrangement with Microsoft as the transition to digital downloads continues to become more prevalent.

Sources tell us that even a major gaming retailer is looking at being able to give shoppers the ability to buy right at the store and have their purchase cued up and ready for download when they get home. Don’t expect an announcement till next year, however, while these companies work on getting the infrastructure and technology in place to handle these types of transactions. Of course, Amazon’s recent decision to change direction could impact these plans.

David Stellmack

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